June 27, 2010

The Virtues Of Bread

Fresh Focaccia Loaves.


You can buy decent focaccia at the bakery, but NOTHING beats homemade bread! Yet, there's that one little ingredient we so often don't keep around the house...patience.

The lesson of bread-making is always 'good things come to those who wait'. Bread is not difficult to make, especially if you have an electric mixer with a bread hook. IT JUST TAKES TIME! I like to make bread, as a signal to myself, when I'm feeling restless in other areas of life. It doesn't really matter the reason--kids and family, work, finances...diligence and good ol' patience are most always the process AND the answer. You do what you can, with what you're given. Then...you wait!


Focaccia provides such a tasty and fragrant reminder that in the end, the reward is worth while. These crusty little loaves have an aroma that can instantly produce a dozen new friends...holding plates. And the flavor? Savory and delicate, with a punch of herbs in every bite. Good things don't always happen when you want them to, but they do happen!

Sommer


A handful of patience is worth more than a bushel of brains. ~A Dutch Proverb

Rosemary and Red Onion Focaccia

¼ cup lukewarm water
1 package of dry active yeast
1 tsp. honey
1 ½ cups cold water
Zest of one lemon
3 Tb. olive oil + extra for bowl and pans
1 ½ tsp. salt
2 ½ TB. fresh chopped rosemary
3 Tb. chopped red onion (or shallot) + extra slices for top
4 cups all-purpose flour
Salt and Pepper

Pour the warm water and honey into the bowl of your electric mixer with a paddle attachment. Add one package of dry active yeast and swirl around. Allow the yeast to foam for 10 minutes or so. Then add the cold water, lemon zest, 2 Tb. oil, salt, rosemary and onions. Turn the mixer on low and slowly add the flour. Once all the flour is in the bowl, switch the paddle to the bread hook attachment. “Knead” on low for about 10 minutes.


Pull the dough away from the sides and rub the bowl down with oil. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and allow the dough to rise for 1 ½ to 2 hours. Remove the plastic wrap and turn the mixer back on for 30 seconds.


Divide the dough into two pieces and press with your fingers into two 9-10 inch round pans. As you press to dough to the edges, don’t be afraid to let your fingers puncture the dough—this will created the bumpy, rustic texture of traditional focaccia.


Cover both pans with a clean, damp towel. Allow the dough to rise again for another 2 hours. Preheat the oven to 400* F. Before baking use the remaining tablespoon of oil and brush the tops of the loaves. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and decorate with thin onion slices, if you like.


Bake for 25-30 minutes, until the tops are golden-brown. Turn out the bread loaves and ENJOY!


Rosemary and Red Onion Focaccia on Foodista

41 comments:

  1. Agree, nothing like homemade bread!!=) And this looks fantastic.

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  2. Oh that is a beautiful focaccia! what I love most about baking bread is the smell of the house while the bread is in the oven! Rosemary and onion focaccia a classic one and soooooo good! I never added honey but I can see the nice twist in the flavor! gorgeous!

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  3. Your focaccia looks gorgeous.
    I am always worried it won't come out right at the altitude we live at. I will take your recipe with me and give it a try. Thanks for sharing.

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  4. Wow what a beautiful focaccia!!

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  5. That looks amazing! I'm starting to get really interested in bread-making. The minute I get my electric mixer (couple of weeks) This will be the first bread I try. It looks real easy to make. Probably a good place to begin my bread-making adventures.

    Could you tell me how much is in the packet of active dry yeast you buy? Thanks :-)

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  6. Love the patterns on the bread. Home made bread is the best!

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  7. That just might be the best looking loaf of bread I've ever seen!

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  8. Beautiful loaves! Thanks for the inspiration.

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  9. Your rosemary and red onion focaccia looks beautiful, I love baking bread, homemade is just so good :-)

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  10. that is beautiful focaccia!! I love the idea of using cake pans...what a stroke of genius!
    thanks for sharing this wonderful recipe and technique!

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  11. Wow... you made them look sooooo amazing, I love homemade bread. And rosemary and onions are such a good combination.

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  12. That looks scrumptious! I don't know why, but I thought of the bread from the Macaroni Grill. This is far more gourmet. Looks delicious!

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  13. I'm not a bread baker, but you may convert me into one with this recipe. This looks fabulous!

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  14. Gorgeous! I agree with you that there's no better aroma than baking bread and nothing beats homemade bread.... :) I've only tried making foccacia with rosemary on top but I like that you added red onions too.

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  15. Val~

    My yeast packets are approx. 1/4 oz. or 8.75 grams. I use the Hodgson Mill brand.

    Focaccia is a GREAT place to start! also check out my whole grain bread recipe. It's another favorite!

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  16. Beautiful Sommer! Your photos make me want to make bread right now. But my throbbing head ache says 'NO!'. I've heard focaccia is pretty easy though. I should probably try it...

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  17. You are so artistic! This isn't just foccacia! They are works of art.

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  18. Oops, I meant to tell you that flax egg is a pretty good egg substitute. In that cookie pie, it was perfect.
    Putting the flax in water overnight draws the endosperm out of the seed, which makes the water like egg white. It's weird but neat...

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  19. So beautiful. I love the starbursts of red onion.

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  20. A loaf of fresh, homemade bread is one of the happiest things on the planet! I am a true bread nut at heart and love finding other "breadies."

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  21. That must be the prettiest focaccia I have ever seen! I've been itching to make proper yeasted bread for months.....

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  22. This is without a doubt the most amazing
    focaccia I have ever seen...Splendid!

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  23. My favourite focaccia bread. :) I love the way you placed the onions on the top. Lovely. :)

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  24. Your focaccia looks wonderful! Fresh, homemade bread can't be beat. And I could do with a lesson in patience so I should probably get baking!

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  25. I was just thinking of making focaccia bread today! How fortuitous that I clicked on your site! :) Your focaccia bread looks simply divine. Yum!

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  26. This looks wonderful. Will be baking bread soon...can't wait!

    Carmen

    p.s. Congrats on Lavender win giveaway at Sweet Life.

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  27. Wonderful foccacia post. Great photos and clear instruction.

    Cheers!

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  28. That is the prettiest and most delicious-looking foccacia I have ever seen. My goodness...

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  29. Dear Sommer - I NEEDED to read your post today. Like an astrological reading these were words I needed to hear. So thank you! :)

    You focaccia leaves me speechless. The artful decorating with the onion and the little pools of olive oil is enough to make me weep.

    Will return for recipe as soon as I am ready to bake some!

    Hugs, Devaki @ weavethousandflavors

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  30. wow what an amazing foccacia and wonderful blog - Rebecca

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  31. I totally agree with you. Focaccia is the first bread I ever made and it got me hooked. Yours is gorgeous!

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  32. Beautiful space, came from Meeta's blog. Exciting recipes and good presentation.
    Best wishes.

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  33. wow love foccacia! I just love the tenderness that was given to make this bread, just awesome! :)

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  34. A little coincidence, my friend and I were talking about foccacia today - during surgery. Yeah, we were helping out a few surgery of the children. He said that he loved "those melted cheese on the grill bread". I told him it was foccacia bread with mozzarella, etc etc...

    Fully random topic in the middle of surgery, I know.But now I have a huge craving for those goodies. (Perhaps you could send me a few your lovely foccacia bread?).

    Btw, it's so true for me right now "good things don't always happen when you want them too"... Patience helps...

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  35. Waw!! Your foccacio's loo tremendously tasty!!

    MMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM,....

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  36. What a beautiful way to serve foccacia. I shouldn't be surprised. Everything on your blog is gorgeous and the recipes are terrific. They keep me coming back for more. I hope you are having a great day. Blessings...Mary

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  37. beautiful bread, we love foccaia true bread takes patience I need to practice patience..

    sweetlife

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  38. Very nice blog. I just came across your blog and love it.

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  39. This is so beautiful! The last time focaccia was made in our house there was so much oil, but this one seems to have not too much.

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